News & Events Weekly Update

9 November 2021


News and Events across the Diocese of Parramatta and beyond


Diocese of Parramatta Notices


Positions Vacant:

  • Digital Content Creator – Diocese of Parramatta

More details at:

Diocese of Parramatta COVID-19 update

As NSW reaches its 80% double dose vaccination target, parishes across Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains are opening their doors for private prayer, Reconciliation and for the celebration of Mass and sacraments such as baptisms, weddings and funerals. Please contact your local parish to check Mass and liturgy times and the COVID-Safe arrangements in place.

Livestreamed Masses from across the Diocese of Parramatta are still available on the Diocesan website For more information, please visit the Diocesan website

‘The Well’ offers spiritual nourishment during lockdown

Need some inspiration and spiritual encouragement during lockdown? Why not check out The Well? The Diocese’s ‘on demand’ streaming site has a tonne of video and prayer resources for you to explore and engage with during this difficult time. As our Year 12 students begin their HSC exams, re-watch the Catholic Youth Parramatta LIFTED Livestream with a special blessing for students from Bishop Vincent. Visit today.

Vale Fr Renato Paras

A Mass of Christian Burial for Fr Renato Paras, Pastor Emeritus of St Aidan’s Parish, Rooty Hill was celebrated at Mary Queen of the Family Parish (St Patrick’s Church) on Thursday 4 November. Born on 12 September 1938 and ordained to the priesthood on 3 December 1967, Fr Renato was a priest for 54 years. He died on 26 October 2021, aged 84. Read more at:

Young people of the Diocese – we are with you

“I am with you always” Matthew 28:20. The Diocese has launched a new website in response to the mental health crisis impacting our young people. The website contains links and information about services that can help young people whose wellbeing is suffering. Please share widely with young people and their families.

Diocese of Parramatta Tribunal is open

The Tribunal of the Catholic Church in the Diocese of Parramatta remains open and committed to assisting anyone with enquiries regarding marriage annulments. Interviews are being conducted via telephone and Zoom in response to COVID-19. Please contact the Tribunal office on (02) 8838 3480 or email

Diocese of Parramatta launches Plenary Council resource website

A new website provides resources for parishioners in the Diocese of Parramatta to stay involved in the Plenary Council, which is exploring what the future of our Church should look like. Beyond the First Assembly of the Plenary Council, visit to find a range of information, a Diocesan prayer and more as we move into a time of prayer, reflection, maturation and development.

Office for Safeguarding offering online training to keep our parishes safe

The Office for Safeguarding is providing an opportunity for all of us to develop our awareness and skills in ensuring our parishes are safe and welcoming places for all. The team are currently offering accompanied online training courses throughout October and November. If you are interested or have any questions about the Safeguarding Training, please email our Safeguarding office on or

Invitations are open to join the Diocesan Pastoral Council

Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv is inviting parishioners across Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains to apply for membership to the Diocesan Pastoral Council. If you feel called to serve in this way or know someone in your parish that would be a wonderful candidate, apply today by visiting Applications close Monday 15 November.

Office for Worship Resources available

The Office For Worship has a range of resources available for purchase for individuals and parishes. Resources such as parent material for a child’s baptism and a collation of prayers can be purchased from the Office For Worship by contacting (02) 8838 3457.

UPDATE: Social Justice COVID-19 Food and Toiletries Drive

Under the remaining influence of the COVID-19 pandemic, Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) and House of Welcome (HoW) cannot receive physical food and toiletry donations. However, many refugee families are still relying on their foodbanks or the provision of food vouchers. In this difficult time, please support JRS and HoW with a cash donation if you can. Find more information or call JRS on (02) 9356 3888 or HoW on (02) 9727 9290.

Life, Marriage and Family Office Marriage Preparation Courses

Dates for the Diocesan Life, Marriage and Family Office’s in-person marriage preparation weekend courses in 2022 are now available, with the SmartLoving Engaged Online course another option to prepare for your marriage. For more information, or to book your course, visit or call (02) 8838 3460.

Deacon Owen Rogers Funeral Arrangements: 12 November

A Mass of Christian Burial for Deacon Owen Rogers, deacon assisting at Corpus Christi Parish, Cranebrook, will be celebrated on Friday 12 November at 10am at Corpus Christi Parish, Cranebrook. All safeguarding and COVID-19 protocols will be observed. Registration and the wearing of face masks are compulsory. There will be a viewing on Thursday 11 November from 5pm to 6pm, which will be organised in accordance with health regulations. Morning Prayer of the Office for the Dead will take place on Friday 12 November at 9.15am at the parish. The Mass will also be livestreamed, with details to come.

Fertility Awareness Online Evening: 17 November

Are you looking for answers to infertility? On Wednesday 17 November at 7.30pm, couples are invited to an online Natural Fertility session hosted by the Diocese of Parramatta. Vinetta Lobo, a certified FertilityCare Practitioner will explain how The Creighton Model FertilityCare System can assess and evaluate your current fertility status and treat infertility. To register, or for more information, please contact Catherine on 0400 427 605 or


Other Notices


Positions Vacant:

  • Expressions of Interest – Classroom teacher (immediate start) – St Francis Xavier Catholic School, Daly River, Northern Territory
  • Expressions of Interest – Early Years teacher (immediate start) – St Francis Xavier Catholic School, Daly River, Northern Territory

If this position interests you, please contact the Principal at for further information.

Support Mass for You at Home

Many people who are isolated, in prison, in hospital or don’t have internet rely on Mass for You at Home. The Catholic Mass is broadcast free-to-air each Sunday morning on Channel 10 and WIN at 6am. Find out more at

Get vaccinated for the common good

Vaccination against COVID-19 is a morally good thing, providing protection for the person vaccinated and the wider community. Some COVID-19 vaccines are associated with ethically questionable production and research practices, but Pope Francis and the Australian Bishops have advised that it is morally permissible to receive any vaccine made available. More information is available at

Vinnies Support Centres are still available to those in need

St Vincent de Paul Support Centres across Greater Sydney are still available and taking calls to arrange for food vouchers or other items to be provided to those in need. If you need assistance, call the Support Centres in Blacktown on (02) 8861 9777, Harris Park on (02) 8861 9757 and Penrith on (02) 8861 9770. To find out more about what support is available, visit

Synod of Bishops – Have your say

Catholics across Australia are invited to participate in a period of local consultation for the next international Synod of Bishops, which has the theme: “For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation and Mission”. Pope Francis has invited us to embark on this journey together, with the first step being to contribute our thoughts to the conversation. You can contribute to the conversation at and find out more at

Sign the petition to welcome 20,000 refugees fleeing Afghanistan

In a sign of unity, major Australian church denominations and Christian organisations have come together to urge the Prime Minister to provide a special intake of an additional 20,000 refugees fleeing Afghanistan and support the ongoing wellbeing of all Afghan refugees and their families. For more information and to sign the petition go to

Madonna magazine – a gift of spiritual sustenance that lasts a whole year

Madonna magazine, published by Jesuit Communications, is an ideal spiritual companion – containing daily prayers, deep reflections and faith-focused articles. We invite you to subscribe or consider taking out a gift subscription for a loved one for only $53 a year. You can find out more about Madonna, how to subscribe, purchase a gift subscription or donate a subscription on the website:

St Mary’s Towers Retreat Centre offering residential retreats

St Mary’s Towers Retreat Centre in Douglas Park, NSW, is offering a series of residential retreats (subject to the health situation) throughout November and December on topics such as ‘Turning to God’ and ‘Be Filled with Grace like Mary’. Retreats commence 5.30pm on the first date and conclude 2.30pm on the final date. For further information or to register for any of the retreats, email or visit

Catholic Engaged Encounter Weekend: 13 – 14 November 2021

How prepared are you for marriage? Engaged Encounter provides you with deeper insights into each other and into married life. We give you a chance to spend time together to strengthen and enrich your relationship. The next Engaged Encounter Weekend will be held on 13 – 14 November. If COVID restrictions prevent a face-to-face seminar, it will be held via Zoom. For further information and to register, visit

Inaugural Australian Cardijn Institute Lecture: 13 November

Venezuelan lay theologian and advisor to the Synod of Bishops Professor Rafael Luciani will deliver the inaugural Australian Cardijn Institute’s Cardijn Lecture on the theme “The Emergence of Synodality: The Latin American Experience” via Zoom on Saturday 13 November at 1pm AEDT. To register for the webinar, please visit For more information, please email Stefan Gigacz at or visit the Australian Cardijn Institute website.

**CANCELLED** Christian Meditation Introduction and Renewal Day: 21 November

Regrettably, the Christian Meditation Introduction and Renewal Day planned at St Benedict’s Monastery, Arcadia, for 21 November has been cancelled. It is hoped, COVID permitting, that they can welcome people back in the new year, with more information to come closer to the proposed renewal days. For enquiries, please contact Ann Lomas on or (02) 9653 2637.

Divine Retreat Centre One Day Pilgrimage Retreat: 28 November

The Divine Retreat Centre in Somersby, NSW is hosting a one-day pilgrimage from 9am to 1pm on Sunday 28 November. All retreats are held with NSW COVID-Safe compliance and masks are mandatory. Bookings are required and limited numbers are available. Please call (02) 4372 1598 or email to confirm attendance. Visit for more information.

Catholic Theological College 2021 National Conference: 29 – 30 November

The Catholic Theological College is hosting their national conference on ‘Recontextualising Pedagogy’ from 29 to 30 November in Melbourne. The conference offers an opportunity to showcase new learning and ongoing research into recontextualising pedagogies exploring areas such as Leadership and Teacher practice. Bookings are still being accepted for online attendance and for individual workshops and keynote addresses. For more information, please visit


For more events please go to:

Please note, some of these notices have been provided to the Diocese of Parramatta, with the request they be made available to parishes and parishioners. The Diocese of Parramatta makes these notices available for information purposes only and does not expressly endorse any of this material, unless otherwise specified. The Diocese of Parramatta cannot be held responsible for any inaccurate or defamatory content.


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